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Saints RB Thomas' wrist injury not likely to keep him out long

New Orleans Saints running back Pierre Thomas, who left the practice field with a left wrist injury Tuesday, is expected to return soon, coach Sean Payton said after an X-ray turned up normal.

"(His return) will be sooner than later," Payton told the Saints' official Web site Wednesday.

Thomas fumbled the football on the first live-tackling play of training camp after a hit from safety Roman Harper and fell to the ground in obvious pain at the start of a red-zone drill. Favoring the wrist, Thomas was taken to the locker room a few minutes later.

Thomas has led the Saints in rushing the past two years. He gained 793 yards while averaging 5.4 yards per carry in 2009 and added 302 receiving yards.

The same wrist required offseason surgery following the 2008 season after Thomas dislocated it during a Week 15 game against the Detroit Lions.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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